Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation, a leading industry standard
The PFP® designation ensures applicants possess the knowledge, skills and attributes to evaluate and manage various wealth forms to optimize their clients' financial situations.
This certification opens doors for professionals who will come up against personal advisory services' most challenging and complex aspects.
Professionals will demonstrate a firm grasp of financial instruments that include insurance, real-estate management, how business income sources affect the client's personal financial situation and estate planning. They will have to competently integrate all elements into a coherent financial plan that reflects their client's attitude toward risk and investment objectives.
Applicants will be provided with a comprehensive overview of the Canadian legal systems, as well as planners' ethical and moral responsibilities. Both the legal aspects (compliance) and tax implications are integral to financial planning. Rather than treating them as separate subjects, they have been directly incorporated into courses.
What's more, PFP® applicants will demonstrate collaborating with other experts in the development of a customized wealth management strategy and planning implementation coordination and conducting a period review.
The PFP® is the comprehensive financial advice designation for banks, trusts and credit unions.
For more information about certification requirements for the Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation and to access investor information, connect to the PFP® designation website.
The PFP® is recognized across Canada (with the exception of Quebec). If you are interested in becoming certified as a financial planner in the Province of Quebec, please click here to review CSI’s financial planning program for the Province of Quebec.
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You must complete one of the following routes to earn your Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation.
* Optional — not required to attain the designation.
† Certification examination.
IMPORTANT: In addition to completing the required courses and examination certification,candidates must have fulfilled a financial planning/financial advising role for three (3) of the last five (5) years. For example, candidates must have been actively engaged in the financial advice or planning role within the last five (5) years to be recognized as eligible for the PFP®designation.
NOTICE: 5-YEAR RULE
The educational path must be completed not more than 5 years prior to application to write the AFP Certification Examination. Exemptions can be granted for courses offered by other education providers. If an individual has exceeded the 5 year time line, completion of the Financial Planning II examination (or equivalent) will be required.
Individuals must apply for the designation within 5 years of successfully completing the AFP Certification Examination. Individuals who do not qualify for the designation within this 5 year period will be required to re-take the AFP certification examination prior to being granted the designation. They will not be required to re-take the educational path.
AFP Certification Examination
The Applied Financial Planning (AFP) is the Certification Examination required in order to achieve the Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation. It represents the final hurdle for candidates to complete the certification requirements for CSI's Personal Financial Planner (PFP®) designation. For more information about certification requirements, including required work experience, click here.
If you have successfully completed the following educational requirements offered through CSI or other approved provider, you are eligible to enroll in the Applied Financial Planning (AFP) Certification Examination:
- Investment Funds in Canada (IFC) or the Canadian Securities Course (CSC®)
- Personal Financial Services Advice (PFSA)*
- Financial Planning I (FP I)*
- Financial Planning II (FP II)*
*The above courses must be completed not more than 5 years prior to application to write the AFP Certification Examination. Exemptions can be granted for courses offered by other education providers.
Curious about how the AFP Certification Examinations are created? Check out this video from the financial services professionals involved in creating those exams.
CSI has developed options to help you earn credentials for the PFP designation.
Enrol by Program
To help you get closer to achieving your PFP* designation and related certificates, we’ve packaged 3 courses together to offer you the Enrol by Program option. The Program is designed to give you flexibility and cost savings while working towards your PFP designation. All courses include a hard-copy textbook(s), where applicable.
The Enrol by Program option is a convenient and cost-effective way to work towards your PFP designation. When you purchase your Program, your student account will be credited with a voucher for each course in the Program. When you're ready to enrol in a course, all you have to do is log into your student account and redeem your voucher online!
* In addition to completing the required courses, you must also have 3 years of relevant work experience to earn the PFP designation. Some required courses and/or examinations for the PFP designation may not be included in the Enrol by Program option. Please review the PFP designation requirements here.
** Subject to change.
*** Please note that if you have enrolled in or completed a course that is included in the Enrol by Program option, you are unable to purchase the Program.
*Prior to submitting your application, please be sure that you understand the eligibility requirements.